Some themes lend themselves much better for formal baby showers than others. A formal tea party baby shower, a pampering or spa baby shower, or book baby shower are terrific alternatives. Other possibilities are to have a diaper collecting baby shower or a casserole baby shower. Typically, these themes indicate a more sedate gathering than let's say, a rubber duckie theme would.
The invitations for the formal baby shower are ones more subject to etiquette than others. Forget the cutesy wordings here, there is a format to follow, which actually makes it easier. Choose a more formal paper as well; something suitable for a wedding invitation or a formal birthday party would also suit the formal baby shower.
The wording should go as follows:
Jane Ellen Smithsonian
requests the pleasure of your company
at a baby shower in honor of
Wilma May Stone
Saturday, the third of July
at two thirty in the afternoon
231 Main Street
New York, New York
Take note that there are no abbreviations used. The full words for the date and time as well as the full names of both the host and honoree are specified. If there is more than one host, the names are listed in alphabetical order. The address of the baby shower venue, however, depends on the guests invited. It's preferable to base the wording on whether the guests are from the same city (where only the street is acceptable), the same state (where the city is included), or with some from out of state (where the state must be included). In any case, you can leave the zip code out.
Do check with the mommy-to-be as to when the baby shower will be, though. Some mothers prefer to have it after the birth to make it convenient for out of town guests that want to see the baby, too. Just mail the invitations about six weeks before the formal baby shower to give everyone a chance to clear their schedules.
The décor for the formal baby shower can be a bit whimsical,
however. After all, it is celebrating a baby! You could base the
décor on the theme that is chosen. A nice offshoot of choosing
a more formal celebration is that there are usually less decorating
tasks involved! These formal affairs tend to be a little more restrained
than the rest.
A formal baby shower can simply be stand-up cocktails or can include a seated dinner with several courses. You could also elect to serve a formal tea with several courses of cakes, pastries, sandwiches, nuts, mints, and a selection of gourmet tea, coffee, or hot chocolate.
The favors could also be employed as extra décor for the
tables. Taking a hint from formal weddings, the favors could be
incorporated into the table decorations and set at each place setting,
perhaps also employed to hold the place cards. You could also place
the favors to complement the baby shower cake, and each guest can
just pick one up as they leave the celebration.